Ten Tips for Dealing with Difficult Co-workers
Is there someone in your workplace drives you crazy? While you probably can’t change such a person, the good news is that by following these 10 tips for dealing with problem people in the workplace, you can avoid being their victim:
1. Identify problem people. Learn to recognize when a co-worker is “toxic.” Difficult people come in all shapes and sizes: Some talk constantly and never listen. A toxic coworker can take the form of a gossip, an instigator, or a nasty competitor.
2. Be careful with bad bosses. Bosses are in charge after all. If your intention is to keep your job, you will have to learn how to get along with an arrogant or controlling boss. If you need to confront your boss, avoid putting him or her on the defensive.
3. Evaluate your situation. Initially, you might be shocked, but take a deep breath, and try to understand exactly what is happening to you.
4. Take concrete action. Your situation won’t improve unless you do something about it. Let the co-worker in question know that you are on to his or her game and that you will take it to a higher authority if necessary.
5. Don’t let the problem gets worse. Deal with the problem while you can maintain some objectivity and emotional control.
6. Protect your reputation. Constant complaining about the situation can quickly earn you the title of “office complainer.”
7. Don’t sink to their level. A void anonymous notes, comments and gossip about the person.
8. Keep it private. Be sure to keep all of your dealings with the person private. Never lose your temper at work or engage in a confrontation in front of your boss or colleagues.
9. Make the first move. If you believe in restoring harmony, you can start by saying: “I’m sorry for what I may have done to hurt you” or “I could be wrong.”
10. Agree to disagree. If you personally dislike a co-worker or boss, you can still learn from their opinions, viewpoints, and ideas. If you can find something to appreciate about them, comment on it in a favorable way.
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